Everyone wants to save time and get more done, but we’re only human and there are only so many hours in a day.
That’s where email productivity tools come in. With email productivity software tools, apps and plugins, you can spend your time working on email more efficiently.
For the typical professional, the right email productivity apps make a big difference. It allows you to save 2, 5 or even 10 hours a week.
At Amitree, we’re all about helping you save time and get more done. This introduction to email productivity tools covers why tracking your email productivity is important, what an email productivity tool is, what it does and how to choose a tool to help improve your productivity.
Why You Should Track Email Productivity
Tracking your email productivity probably isn’t something you think about often. Sure, we all get the feeling we spend too much time on email. You know you are getting distracted from other tasks only because your inbox isn’t as organized as you’d like it to be.
But many people are surprised at just how much time can be lost to email.
The typical worker gets 120 emails every day. Firstly, that’s a lot of emails. More than a third of the day goes to just working through your messages.
But here’s the worst part — getting distracted by a new email that pops into your inbox can cost even more time. Research shows it takes almost 30 minutes to refocus after a distraction.
It’s clear if you’re not paying attention to your own email productivity, it can cost you. That’s time you could spend increasing your sales, growing your business or finding a better work-life balance.
What to Know About Email Productivity Tools
The tools we use for email productivity are supposed to make it easier to get work done. With the right tools, you should be able to:
- Cut down on the hours you spend on your email.
- Minimize distractions that cause you to lose focus.
- End up with an inbox where everything is organized and easy to find.
It’s all a matter of finding the right tool for the job.
When it comes to choosing software, email productivity apps come in all shapes and sizes.
The Outlook and Gmail inbox management tools you already use to manage your email are one example.
These basic tools let you read, reply, sort, and label your messages for better productivity. They also integrate with other Microsoft and Google productivity apps so you can manage your schedule, tasks and reminders.
As we noted recently, better productivity is possible with just Outlook and Gmail productivity tools. But it can be difficult to manage these advanced user options on your own.
That’s why for a lot of people, the best app for organizing emails may not be your Outlook or Gmail client. You may need additional email productivity tools to get the job done that makes it easier to manage email tasks.
How to Use Email Productivity Software Tools
So what can you do with an email productivity tool besides answering an email? Quite a bit actually.
Here are 7 workflow problems that email productivity software tools can solve:
- Communication – Friction in communication can really slow you down. Lots of software for email productivity features the ability to have near-instant communication. This allows you to share information, ideas and answers quickly with coworkers, clients and customers.
- Organization – A disorganized inbox can make it nearly impossible to work efficiently. Organizing your inbox with an email management app can help highlight and preserve your most important messages so that nothing falls through the cracks.
- Collaboration – Working together on projects and accounts can be a hassle without the right tool. The best email management apps make collaboration a breeze, with the ability to manage and even automate status updates, file management and more.
- Progress Tracking – Without the right tool, email can take up a lot of your time as you try to track your progress. An email productivity tool can help automate processes so you and your team can stay up to date about progress reports.
- Document Sharing – Even digital files can get lost or disorganized. Email productivity apps can help you manage manage the versions, feedback and sign-offs of important documents while organizing file systems that make it easy to find what you need.
- Staying Connected – Being tied to a workstation is impossible in the modern work environment. Email productivity tools help make it easier for you to work remotely or on the go and stay connected with your team, projects and customers.
- Sharing Updates – It can be tough to to keep everyone on the same page. Email productivity software can help you share updates, even automatically, so that team members, clients and other stakeholders stay informed about work progress.
Fortunately, there are email productivity software tools that can handle all of these challenges in order to boost your productivity. They’re tools to help you reclaim lost time.
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What Email Productivity Features Are a Must
A lot of today’s email productivity tools are feature-packed, but it’s important to take stock of what benefits these tools really offer.
Some features are a must, while others may just be bells and whistles that might not save you as much time as you think.
If you’re really trying to save time with your email, these are the most important features to look for:
- Email Organizer Features – The number-one time sink for email is disorganization. You want to make sure your choice of email productivity app can help you address inbox clutter. This might include auto sorting features, archiving features or priority inbox features that help clean up your inbox.
- Calendar Scheduler Features – Many email messages deal with time. You should make sure your email tool makes scheduling meetings and deadlines faster and easier. A good calendar scheduler can cut down on distractions and save you lots of time.
- Project/Task Manager Features – As email arrives, your list of to-dos will get longer. Project and task manager features help you manage your workflow inside your email so that you can flag, prioritize and track your tasks as you work.
- Reminders and Updates Features – Incoming email also means a new list of things you need to keep tabs on. Reminders and updates features are a must so that you can set up reminders and send out updates to keep everyone on the same page.
- Email Automation Features – Handling email by hand takes so much time that an automation tool is a necessity. You need a way to automate repetitive tasks, such as email sorting, confirmation emails, task tracking, reminders and status updates.
While there may be other email productivity features you’ll find useful in your day-to-day work, these 5 features are the ones that will save you the most time. Make sure any tool you consider using offers them.
How to Pick the Best Email App for Productivity
The right tool can save you a lot of time and hassle on your email. Of course, this will be possible if you follow the right steps to choose your best email app for productivity.
- Take stock of where you are, tracking where your time is going and which of your email tasks are taking too long.
- Decide whether you want to try learning the advanced features of your current email client or try out another app.
- Think about your current workflow and look for apps that address these inefficiencies and offer the features you need and want.
Better email productivity not only saves you time but also makes work a lot more fun. If you find yourself frustrated, it may be time to re-think your approach to email and try out a new tool.
And not to brag, but making email more efficient and less time-consuming is why we do what we do at Folio.
Folio helps solve common email workflow bottlenecks and comes with all the features you need to be more productive. This includes advanced AI automation, email organization, calendar scheduling, task management, reminders and status updates.
Our AI-powered algorithms automatically sort your Gmail or Outlook inbox into workflows that make sense. Stay productive with our Smart Folders, reminders, and integrations with your favorite tools.
Start your free trial of Folio today and save even more time on email.
Who we are
We've built Folio: the first AI email assistant for professionals.
Folio plugs directly into your work email inbox and automatically organizes your email, giving you contextual access to all the information you need to increase your productivity in minutes.
We are a team of passionate product people and engineers that gets excited about solving complex processes and creating value for people.
We're a venture funded company backed by Accel Partners, Vertical Venture Partners, and other leading venture capital firms and angel investors such as Ash Patel and Jerry Yang.